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Cherise Burda — Oct. 3, 2011

Ontarians head to the polls on Thursday to elect the next provincial government, at the close of an election campaign where green energy has emerged as a hot-button issue. As the rhetoric has escalated on all sides of the debate, Ontario voters have also had to wade through a great deal of misinformation about their energy options. Read more...

Cherise Burda — May 17, 2011

As the price of gas continues to fluctuate, drivers are feeling the pinch, and they're looking for someone to blame — be it the HST, the energy companies or political unrest in the Middle East. Many motorists are also calling for the government to step in and provide relief, prompting Ottawa to push for more transparency on how those skyrocketing prices are set. Meanwhile, the Ontario government claims that if it reduces prices at the pump through tax decreases, energy companies will just jump in and inflate prices to fill the gap. Read more...

Jennifer Grant — Jan. 7, 2011

Freshly minted Environment Minister Peter Kent made no apologies for the oilsands' environmental record when speaking with media outlets including the Globe and Mail and CBC's Evan Solomon this week, calling the industry "ethical in every sense of the word."

It's a familiar argument, drawn from the playbook of Conservative pundit Ezra Levant — and a classic case of the rhetorical device called bait-and-switch. Read more...

Julia Kilpatrick — Dec. 21, 2012

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness.” Though originally written as a social criticism of the period leading up to the French Revolution, Charles Dickens’ words seem an equally appropriate characterization of the past year for energy and environment issues in Canada. Read more...

P.J. Partington — Jan. 12, 2012

The federal government has repeatedly touted its forthcoming regulations for coal-fired electricity as proof that it’s serious about climate change. It was therefore concerning to see reports from the Globe and Mail last week that suggest the government might “backtrack” on their coal regulations even before the final version has seen the light of day. Read more...

P.J. Partington — Oct. 21, 2013

It’s not often we see international praise for climate change policy in Canada, but that’s exactly what the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) did in a recent report, highlighting British Columbia’s carbon tax as a leading example of carbon pricing. Read more...

Terra Simieritsch — Nov. 4, 2010

As a second wave of oiled ducks created outrage about the consequences of oilsands tailings lakes, another oilsands story broke last week that impacts far greater numbers of waterfowl.

On Friday, Alberta Environment Minister Rob Renner announced that the Alberta government is not planning to implement the recommendations of the Alberta Water Council.  Read more...

Marc Huot — May 10, 2012

Over the months ahead, expect to hear frequent references to a new report released Wednesday comparing the greenhouse gas emissions associated with oilsands production to emissions from other sources of crude oil used in Europe. We took a close read of the report, prepared for the Government of Alberta by Jacobs Consultancy, and there seems to be a problem: the report’s findings about how oilsands compare to conventional oil do not tell the full story, and government documents appear to misinterpret the implications of those findings. Read more...

Jennifer Grant — April 7, 2011

Alberta released its draft plan for the Lower Athabasca Region earlier this week, and there was certainly no shortage of drama as commentators digested what it all means — with sometimes comical degrees of accuracy.

Tuesday's breathless headlines — including reports that Alberta oilsands companies were "stunned" by the plan, and a bizarre and factually inaccurate press release by Alberta's Wildrose Alliance Party arguing that protecting land (in an area that has virtually no oil potential) represented a "devastating assault" on the province's economy — have since been followed by more sober assessments. Read more...

Marc Huot — April 22, 2010

I had a little bit of U.S.-envy as I read an article describing a delay by our neighbours to the south in leasing land for natural gas production while the greenhouse gas implications of the decision were considered. I was envious because Alberta doesn't follow any such process for oilsands development. Read more...

Andrew Read — Nov. 15, 2013

Next week, an important piece of legislation will continue through its third reading in the Alberta legislature. Bill 31, the protecting Alberta’s environment act, would establish the Alberta Environmental Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Agency (AEMERA) to obtain relevant scientific data and information regarding the condition of the environment in Alberta.

While the bill is essential to establish an independent monitoring agency — a goal we support — the proposed legislation has some basic flaws. Even more concerning, the government has been surprisingly closed-minded in responding to amendments proposed in the legislature that would enhance the bill. Read more...

Erin Flanagan — Sept. 23, 2013

After eight years of deliberation, Alberta has essentially handed industry a free pass when it comes to compensating for the loss of wetlands in the oilsands region. Given the pressure the government is under to show its environmental scruples these days, you’d think it would have seized this opportunity. Instead, the policy gave the oilsands industry at least a two-year exemption from taking any responsibility for wetlands. Read more...

Graham Haines — Nov. 24, 2010

Yesterday I attended a government briefing on the release of Ontario's long-term energy plan. I walked away pleased that the government was staying the course on developing a green and reliable electricity system that Ontarians can be proud of. This government has been criticized for recent increases to electricity bills, and it would have been easy to back down from their plans and instead move forward with a cheaper, dirtier plan — but they did not, and for this they should be commended. Read more...

Nathan Lemphers — July 20, 2010

I recently went looking to see what kinds of plans were in place in case of an emergency involving 840 million cubic metres (equivalent to 330,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools) of toxic liquid tailings waste deposited by oil sands mines north of Fort McMurray . The problem is, instead of finding what I was looking for, I was sent on a wild goose chase, leading me to wonder: Does anyone know what happens if something goes wrong? Read more...

P.J. Partington — Aug. 9, 2012

The federal government’s just-released 2012 update to Canada’s Emissions Trends is an important report from Environment Canada that explores the trends expected to shape Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions this decade. The release of the first edition last July, along with this week’s updated version, are welcome because emissions projections like these are crucial to assessing the impact of Canada’s policies against the commitments the government has made to Canadians and to the world. Read more...

Josha MacNab — Oct. 6, 2010

At last week's convention of the Union of British Columbia Municipalities, John Yap, B.C.'s Minister of State for Climate Action, announced that the provincial government is developing new offset guidelines to help local governments meet their carbon neutral commitments. While all the details have yet to be hammered out, initial indications are that these guidelines may see substandard offset projects being counted toward carbon neutrality. Now is the time to ensure that these guidelines adhere to the highest possible standards, or we risk losing the integrity of B.C.'s carbon neutral commitment. Read more...

Matt Horne — Feb. 19, 2013

Initial observations of the outcome of B.C.'s carbon tax review presented in B.C.’s 2013 Budget Read more...

Claire Beckstead — Nov. 7, 2011

It's an exciting day for climate-conscious British Columbians as an important step has been taken to reduce the greenhouse gas pollution caused by burning gasoline and diesel in our cars.

  Read more...

Matt Horne — June 29, 2012

All too often in the world of climate policy we’re confronted by a lack of progress, so it’s encouraging when there is some positive news to report. A trio of reports from B.C. this week all pointed to some initial success emerging from the province’s Climate Action Plan — an initial success that we hope will kick start a "What’s next?" conversation in the province. Read more...

Josha MacNab — Sept. 20, 2013

We’ve always known that British Columbia has great ideas when it comes to taking action on climate change, but it’s nice to know that other people are paying attention. Read more...

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